Properties of the cherimoya
The cherimoya can be considered as a fruit that is graceful from a dietary and nutritional point of view. In addition, for its aroma, flavor and pure white color, it gives us a guarantee of how hygienic it is. It does not need any culinary treatment to be consumed, since it is eaten as is.
Sometimes, in people who suffer constipation and consume this fruit for the first time, intestinal alterations appear. In these cases, the individual usually stops immediately when they believe they feel bad, and what the cherimoya is really doing is helping to correct their intestinal problem.
This intestinal reaction is intensified if the cherimoya is consumed in the dessert after a very copious meal.
Possesses in its composition powerful enzymes that self-digest the pulp, even without the need for juices and bodily enzymes, therefore it is a fruit of easy digestion which makes it very advisable in weak, convalescent, elderly people, in dyspepsia and very specially in children and pregnant women.
It has satiating and regulating effect of blood glucose level, since the fiber that it possesses exerts intestinal influence and dilates in time the assimilation of sugars. Therefore if we take custard apples, it will take longer to feel hungry.
Its fiber content also gives it laxative properties.
Being low in fat and having a fiber with a very beneficial intestinal effect (drags bad cholesterol and absorbs bile acids at the same time and regulates the intestinal flora), reduces cholesterol levels.
In pediatrics it has dietary applications (in the form of purees or juices) due to its content of minerals (calcium, phosphorus, iron), vitamins (group B, C, A), proteins and sugars. Therefore, it is very advisable in children in the growing season or in case of chronic diseases.
Due to its vitamin C content, it facilitates the healing of numerous rheumatic, arthritic, digestive diseases (enteritis and gastritis), as well as exerting antioxidant action and being very useful in combating colds. This vitamin, in turn, is involved in the formation of collagen, bones, teeth, red blood cells and promotes the absorption of iron from food and resistance to infections.
Being this source of vitamin A and C, it has an antioxidant effect, an important ally in the maintenance of youth and beauty.
Paradoxically, cherimoya is also recommended in slimming diets, as it has a satiating and regulating effect of the blood glucose level by the fiber it possesses, which exerts an influence as an intestinal laxative, at the same time that it dilates in time the assimilation of the sugars However, in these cases it is advisable to take small fruits.
Due to its low sodium content, rich in potassium and low in fat, it is advisable for people with high blood pressure or cardiac or blood vessel alterations.
Being a source of potassium should be careful people with kidney failure, but on the other hand, will be beneficial for those taking diuretics that eliminate potassium.
In addition, this mineral is necessary for the transmission and generation of the nerve impulse and for normal muscle activity. Intervenes in the water balance inside and outside the cell
The mineral elements that it contains, make it very useful to help in the recovery processes of a number of ailments. Thus, it contributes iron, reason why it is adapted for people with anemia; calcium, which is helpful for people with decalcification or osteoporosis and phosphorus, which helps to strengthen the memory of students and the elderly.
It has tonic action, thus preventing decay and fatigue, avoiding depressions.
This fruit is also attributed a balancing action of the nervous system, so it would be an excellent anxiolytic and tranquilizing, very suitable for the treatment of compulsive people.
Finally, it should be noted that some products extracted from cherimoya seeds have been successfully applied in investigations for the treatment of lice, dysentery, cephalalgias (headaches), gout and stones.
Who should take them?
After knowing all the properties that enclose the cherimoya we can deduce that it interests to consume them to people with:
- Cardiovascular diseases.
- Arterial hypertension.
- Bulimia or intense appetite.
- Children (caution with seeds) and adolescents of growing age.
- In older people.
- Pregnant women.
- Lactating women
- Digestion problems
3. A healthy consumption
The best way to eat the cherimoya is to consume it alone, since it is a complete fruit in itself from the digestive point of view; It has satiating effect and is regulating the level of blood glucose, which makes it possible to not starve making a breakfast, a snack and even a dinner eating only a custard apple.
It is not advisable to take it for dessert after a copious meal, since there is an intestinal reaction effect plus a bioelectric one in the stomach (caused by the richness in sugars of this fruit), activating an excess of intestinal peristalsis, gas and discomfort that can be uncomfortable
4. What should I know to buy them?
In the market we can find them in bulk or packaged.
Both in bulk and packaged, we have to notice that they are not broken and that they give off a fresh smell, with a slight nutty touch.
The quality of the packaging is indicated by the color of the label, so we can differentiate:
- Red label- superior quality
- Green label- good quality
- Yellow label - inferior quality
5. Its use in the kitchen
It's delicious like fresh fruit. It is easy to consume, just cut it in half and eat your pulp with a spoon.
It is necessary to be careful with the seeds in case we give it to the children.
It presents a drawback: the black pulp is put in contact with the air. To avoid this, we should sprinkle it with lime or lemon juice.
We must consume them when they are fully ripe, which is when the color of the shell changes from light green to dark green or yellowish.
It can be used as a raw material to make, ice cream, smoothies and jams.
6. How do we keep them at home?
This fruit is not preserved for a long time and requires very careful handling.
Its skin is very sensitive to touch and blackens easily, although it can be consumed despite the fact that it acquires this dark coloration and yields slightly when pressed.
You have to avoid keeping them in the fridge, because their ripening is interrupted, so if they want to eat cold, we will put them in the fridge the moment just before consumption.
María del Carmen Moreu Burgos
Pharmaceutical and Food Technologist. Diploma in Nutrition.